‘Startup Hour’ looks to expand ‘Shark Tank’ model during SXSW

By March 4, 2015Startup News
New Austin businesses will have a chance to received investments in their company during South By Southwest when “The Startup Hour,” an in-production competitor to ABC’s popular business competition Shark Tank, comes to Austin for two days of filming.

The show hasn’t announced when or where it will air or who its hosts will be. Its model lets viewers participate in the process by becoming crowdfunders for the featured businesses.
The filming takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 14-15 at the WeWork building on Congress Avenue. Businesses interested in pitching can sign up at TheStartupHour.com.
Jonathan Block, an executive producer for the show, said his team is taking advantage of new regulations that allow companies to gather funding and distribute equity via crowdfunding to help startups get off the ground. ABJ guest columnist Hall Martin chronicled the changes in this recent article “What you need to know about crowdfunding rules.”
“We’re chasing the need we all face, the challenge of getting a company funded and there’s funding out there that’s just looking for a gateway,” he said. “We have a very broad profile when it comes to the kind of company we’re looking for, and we’re open to all (business) verticals. We want a company where an infusion would take them to the next level.”

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